Sara Holtz’s artwork ‘Keeper Chandelier’ is on display at Bucktown Gallery through the end of August.

Sara Holtz’s artwork ‘Keeper Chandelier’ is on display at Bucktown Gallery through the end of August.

In the back of a newspaper a couple of weeks ago I came across a call to entry. The Bucktown gallery was looking for submissions for a show called Revive2 that had to include something recycled. I have never had art in a gallery show before, but since this was my preferred medium I had a couple of pieces already, so I thought I would submit them and hope for the best.

I was overjoyed to hear I had been accepted, and have been extremely pleased to be a part of the show, which is on display at Bucktown, 225 E. 2nd St., Davenport, and will have a closing reception this weekend at 6 p.m.

As for my journey to this point . . .

My first entry was a trio of shelves that I salvaged from old drawers. They have been spray painted, each turned on its side, and are backed with a blue and white patterned paper reminiscent of cartoon clouds. They are practical with the visual impact coming from their size, non-traditional mounting, and being grouped together.

I thought if I offered one more functional and one more whimsical entry I’d better my chances at being in the show. So my second work needed to be more about the message. Titled,” Keeper Chandelier,” it is a found object light fixture. My artist statement for this piece read:

“For this keeper it was keys. It was glass jars in my grandpa’s garage full of things. Then it was a button box of my grandmother’s. Growing up I saw it in my mother’s jewelry box, pearls needing restrung, single earrings, or a spare clasp.  For my brother it was a bottle cap, then a key fob and a key from a lawnmower we got rid of. It is hope for finding that other earring or a need for this size bracket… Hope that I’ll scratch this lottery ticket with my lucky bottle cap and the luck will transfer.

Tsara revive 2 art 2hey stayed there in their places all the still useful keepers. Their job was practical. Their job was reminding. Their job was talisman. Is there a better light than hope?”

See? It is full of feels!

I filled out the entry form and attached the photos.  Then, I got all anxious, procrastinating till the very last day for entry. I saw these wonderful works up in the gallery and seriously thought about not submitting anything. Eventually my people and I agreed I had already won for even trying, so I hit send.

Soon after, I received word my works were accepted. It was thrilling, and a terrific experience, from the opening reception throughout the month of August as my art has been on display with so many other talented artists’ work.

At the opening reception, I checked out the rest of the works in Revive 2.  I heard viewers talking. I got to stand back cooly on the wall eavesdropping and watching reactions. I had a chance to hear from fellow artists regarding my stuff specifically how my pieces had made them think.

If nothing else comes from the experience of being in the art show, just knowing that I have inspired these people is pretty great. My part in perpetuating this creation is worth it. It is my thoughts and ideas that have blown in to their yards and will grow up tall and bright, weeds that just keep coming back.


Sara Holtz is a Quad-Cities-based artist and writer. Two of her works are included in the Revive 2 art show at Davenport’s Bucktown Art Gallery. This story is a first person account of her experience being a part of that show.